20 Awesome Gift Ideas For 1-Year Olds

October 3, 2018
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I’m not sure about how others feel, but I find thinking about gift ideas for 1-year olds really difficult.

I don’t like wasting things and I feel as though so many toys could be wasted on a child that you who is honestly just not ready to play with them.

However, there are some wonderful toys and gift ideas out there for 1-year olds that they will genuinely get some great use out of. Those are the ones that I’m sharing with you today.

I’ve broken them down into 4 categories to make it even simpler.

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1) Push Car

My son was given one of these for his first birthday. He is still using it now at 3-years of age. It was such a well-used gift that we decided to purchase one for our daughter’s first birthday as well. The two of them use them daily!

2) Activity Cube

This is the perfect gift for a 1-year old, especially if they’re not yet walking. It’ll keep them happy and entertained for quite some time!

For us, this kind of toy works so well in independent playtime.

Read –> How to Get Your Child to Play Independently

3) Water Table

If you put a towel under it, this can actually be an indoor toy as well. In summer we love using it for water play and in winter you can easily switch out the water for some sand.

4) Rocking Horse

As well as being cute, this toy is great for encouraging mobility and imagination!

5) Nemo

Annie got this for her first birthday from her grandparents and it has been a hit! I’m not sure if it’s the big eyes or the noise it makes, but she loves it.

6) Wooden Cars/Trucks

Some may think these good for just boys, but I can tell you my daughter has plenty of fun pushing these around!

Ours have been used indoors and outdoors. They’ve been roughed up but are still in very good working order despite being left out in the rain on multiple occasions.


Honestly, it feels weird calling these toys educational because, in reality, the art of playing is in and of itself educational at this age.

7) Hammering Block

Great for motor skill development as well as being entertaining, I think this is a toy that every 1-year old should have in their collection.

8) Marble Toy

These always seem to be in doctors waiting rooms and my kids love them. You can buy a mini version to have at home.

Not only will they keep your one-year old entertained, but they work well in later years for teaching colours and shapes.

9) Magnetic Tiles

I love that these can grow with your kids and that unlike lego, they aren’t a choking hazard.

10) Instrument

If you’re a grinch like me, you’ll want one that makes as little noise as possible. I always like purchasing wooden toys as I find they last longer.


11) Colouring Book (Magic)

Such a genius invention! These magic colouring books will keep your little one entertained, will keep the mess to a minimum, and can be reused over and over. That’s a huge win in my books!

I’ve seen moms recommend these for road trips and air travel as they aren’t messy and can be reused.

12) Playdoh

We love it because it is not too messy and can be bought or made.

Playdoh has allowed for hours of creative fun in our household. We actually don’t have any playdoh specific tools, but my kids have plenty of fun with just a teaspoon and butter knife from the kitchen drawer.

13) Paint

1-year olds eat everything, am I right? So, edible paints are a must.

14) Kinetic Sand

Such a clever invention! Kinetic sand is wonderful for sensory play and can be used as your child gets older for other educational purposes.


P.S For outdoor activity ideas for toddlers, check out –> THIS POST.

15) Push Tricycle

Most 1-year olds will struggle to push themselves around for any length of time. We love our ‘push’ tricycle that allows the parent to easily take over when necessary.

16) Moccasins

Perfect for little ones that are still getting used to being on their feet. We used these a lot for Annie over the first 18-20 months of her life.

My kids have tiny feet and so finding shoes that fit comfortably but are still sturdy can be a challenge.

Moccasins are great at providing both.

17) Overalls

These are perfect for when your 1-year old is still not overly confident on their feet, or perhaps hasn’t started walking yet. It saves so much washing to be able to slip this on over their regular clothes.

I’ve seen them used in the backyard, at the park, and even at the beach.

Another mom I know used them for her son’s sports games. They were held early in the morning when there was still heavy dew on the grass. It meant her daughter could still run around and play without getting cold and wet.

18) Sidewalk Chalk

Big enough for them to easily hold, sidewalk chalk is something that has given both of my kids lots of entertainment. Plus, it encourages outdoor play which is always a win in my books!

19) Bubbles!

You could go for basic bubbles or splurge and get a bubble machine to do the work for you.

I actually love bubbles for those times when babies are really miserable and teething. Sometimes it’s just the kind of distraction that they need in order for their mood to improve a little bit.

Plus, you can totally top them up with a bit of dishwashing liquid when it starts to get low.

20) Paddle Pool

Awesome for the summertime and can be converted to a sandpit in the cooler months. 🙂

We’ve had ours for 18 + months. It has been out in the weather the entire time and is still in great shape! We actually bought two so that when it does have sand in it we can use the other half to as a cover to keep the neighbourhood cats out.

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